Thundercat at The Forum
Last Friday night I entered a musical vortex of bass-groove-heaven. Location: Melbourne, The source: Stephen 'Thundercat' Bruner.
Playing at the highly esteemed and much loved 'Forum', world renowned bassist 'Thundercat' managed to Sell out, pack to the rafters, and then almost certainly 'musically depress' his doting Aussie crowd. Now I'm not talking about 'depress' because of a sad or underwhelming musical experience here, quite the opposite actually - it's coming to terms with the fact that his skills were SO impressive that in reflecting on that, you realise that your own skills don't even come close....(if you give it a few days, that feeling usually turns into inspiration and the world is all good again). As soon as Thundercat and his band appeared on stage, the crowd swamped the floor making it near impossible to move. I'm sure most people, like I, spent a lot of the night swaying back and forth between gaps of peoples heads, just trying to capture as much of him as possible.
Playing/ singing songs from both his albums 'Golden Age of Apocalypse' and most recently 'Apocalypse', he showed Melbourne fans why he is at the top of his game. On stage with keys player Dennis Hamm and well respected drummer Thomas Pridgen, Thundercat drove their musical van into crazy town, with hectic solos that had you crossed eyed and mind blown. The speed and precision of his bass playing had my face scrunched up and in awe for 90% of the show.. I even walked away with a sore neck from too much grooving.
Draped in an oversized-oversized red scarf and melodically defying everything you know – Thundercat brought exactly what we expected out of him and then some! If someone can pull off a killer song that is written entirely about their cat (seriously), then you have my respect. It's obvious his quirks and personality shine through in his playing.
Not shying away from the sensitive stuff either, Thunderat mentioned a bit of his late friend Austin Peralta - the reason and inspiration of his latest record. I think most would agree that Thundercat is giving new light and revolution to bass playing and bass players. Along with proving that jazz is super cool. A great night of musical madness and 'wooowwww' moments. Bass-ically, everything you read about Thundercat is true...he is a musical freak show.